Wednesday, April 29, 2009

New Communication Tech & Associations

Over on Signature i, there is a great post on new communication technologies, strategic planning for vertical and lateral communication, and why systems that foster group action benefit the entire association.

Here the author posits how progressive associations will benefit.

Instead forward-thinking associations will experiment and adopt the right capabilities to be more responsive, knowledge-rich, and people-powerful. And they have every reason to trust they will make good decisions if they trust their members to own the association as their technology for group action.

Via: Shifted

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Applying for the ArLiSNAP Co-Moderator Position

ArLiSNAP Candidacy from Bryan Loar on Vimeo.

I've been involved with ARLIS/NA's student & new professional group (ArLiSNAP) for the last three years. This year I decided to try out for a new role, a new role for me that is. The video above is a lighthearted candidacy announcement. I also made a more serious announcement on ArLiSNAP's site (with a link to the video of course).

Monday, April 20, 2009

The Evolving Art Librarian: Academic Perspective Notes

Academic survey and perspective presented by Cathy Carpenter, Head, Architecture Library, Georgia Institute of Technology
  • 10% of respondents say that they feel like they must adapt or die
  • Library users look to the library to provide a meeting place for discussion groups, exhibits, events. This stems from their experience of incidentally seeing colleagues while researching within the library
  • 4 themes prevailed: #1 De-Evolving Library Profession [i.e. de-professionalization] - especially in subject-specific collection development and programming; #2 training - no time allotted for technology training; #3 Communication Silos - inability to communicate across the organization; #4 Fluid Collections - non-traditional materials [Carpenter indicates that this can be a strength due to uniqueness]
Partial event details here.

I Was Already a McKinsey Evangelist, But Thank You

I received the message below a few days ago, and I've commented on Saffo's "Get Ready for a New Economic Era" post [note: awaiting moderation as of April 2oth]. 

Basically, I indicated that when we commoditize information we must make sure those systems that allow us to access, retrieve, and store information are stable.  That stability is not always a reality with hardware and software vendors using consumer-economy ideologies (e.g. continuous upgrades that are driven by competitive market forces).  That's not to say that I advocate a non-competitive landscape.  It's just that the model is troublesome when data must be migrated and the migration is only partially successful.  Data loss = profit & knowledge loss.

Dear Bryan Loar,

We’re writing to you about a new digital publication from McKinsey that we hope you will be interested in blogging about. Called What Matters,, our goal is to convene the most exciting thinkers from around the world to offer their views on each topic.  We asked our experts to address ten big questions, whose answers will shape our collective future.  In each case, our essayists take a long view and tackle tomorrow’s trends rather than today’s headlines.

Based on what you’ve blogged about in the past, we thought the question “In less than 20 years, the Internet has transformed the way we shop, socialize, and communicate. What's next?” and our experts’ opinions might be of interest to you.  We welcome your opinion by linking to the essays on or commenting on our What Matters Web site.

Thanks very much for your consideration.


The McKinsey Quarterly

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The Power of Research in the Age of Google

Yeah, I'm sure that Google loves that title, but have you seen this?

Starting with a Jack in the Box sign visible from a window in the video, she and Mr. Drake, who analyzes satellite images for a nonprofit, used that and other clues to assemble a street view and began to search Google satellite images for locations that matched. Then Paris Miller, a Northern Kentucky computer consultant, traced one of Ms. Hammonds' friends to Conover, N.C. There she was able to find a Domino's near a Jack in the Box.

"I didn't even intend on doing this," Ms. Miller said. "I didn't know how big this was becoming." She credits another user with calling the location to confirm that the pair worked there. Mr. Drake contacted Tim McIntyre, Domino's VP-communications. The Consumerist trio will each get Domino's coupons roughly equivalent to a year of free food.

Oh yeah, and Domino's used Twitter to help manage their rep too.

Via: Advertising Age

Friday, April 17, 2009

Italian Beer & Libraries...Greenfield Is Cool!

Image: Carnegie's - A Place to Eat by Bryan Loar

Decided to stop in Greenfield, IN, to grab a bite to eat. Going past all the chains near 70, we came to the historic area of Greenfield and serendipitously happened upon this library-turned-restaurant. We didn't eat there, but it was certainly cool. For mor info check out this -

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Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Free Access to American History Video

Alexander Street's "American History in Video provides the largest and richest online collection of video available for the study of American history—2,000 hours and more than 5,000 titles on completion."

Free access until April 30th, 2009.

Via: ALA Direct

What's a Library?

Image: SCILS by ksscils598s08

Rutgers will permanently change the "School of Communication, Information, and Library Studies" to "the School of Communication and Information."

Not sure how I feel about that. I guess it's better than changing Library Studies to Information Commons Studies.

Via: ALA

Angie Harris & U.S. Route 40

Image: 40 by Angie Harris

I've been wanting some time to get out and take photographs of old signs around Columbus--especially in Whitehall. This one by Harris of Motel 40 is on the opposite side of C-bus, but it's indicative of what can be found along the National Road.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Watchmen Easter Eggs or How Alex McDowell Learned to Love Immersive Design

Image:Alex McDowell Lecture at Ohio State University (Bryan Loar)  

Last night I had the pleasure of listening to a free talk @ the Wex by Alex McDowell. McDowell uses a technique that he call immersive design to integrate silos of design into a more holistic union, making pre-planning (i.e. pre-production for film, digital prototyping for industrial design) more important than it has been over the last 20 years.

Here's a McDowell quote from Wired and is what he basically said last night:

"The big premise of immersive design, whether it's videogames or architecture or animation or film, is that in each of those areas, world-building is the core idea."

Central to that notion is narrative and how that narrative "can transverse the newly permeable membrane surrounding all forms of immersive story telling, between media and across culture." [taken from the definition of immersive design below]

Image: Immersive Design Definition (Bryan Loar)

Digital tools such as D-Vis and his virtual camera, which shows how a virtual space would look mapped over a real space--something akin to augmented reality, help McDowell realize and visualize immersive spaces yet to be built.

And those Easter eggs?  Well, if you're a die-hard Watchmen fan, you probably already know.  Dr. Manhattan's appartment sports both a coffee table book entitle "The Man Who Fell to Earth," and a room that pay homage to the movie of the same title with a ping-pong table, astroturf, wallpaper that mimicks a stand of trees, and leaves on the astroturf.  There are some great pictures of this stuff posted by Meredith Woerner here.

One other quick note...check out Death and the Powers which McDowell is lending a hand to.  The main protagonist of the opera leaves his body behind and becomes part of the set design, i.e. the System.  Themes of loss, morality, and others that surround some "ghost in the machine" thinking are prevelant.  However, most striking will be the use of a robotic, musical "chandelier" that the protagonist will communicate through.

If you liked this post, check out my other post on Bruce Mau from the same OSU Glimcher Lecture series.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Central Ohio Fire Museum & Learning Center

A great museum with knowledgeable guides--each piece has a great story.

Friday, April 03, 2009

OSU's FIN, Volunteering, & Josef Albers

Image: Interaction of Color by Joanne Mattera

Yesterday, I met with Amanda Gluibizzi, head librarian of Ohio State University's Fine Arts Library (FIN). It was great to reconnect, hear about what's new @ FIN, and get introduced & reintroduced to some art/humanities electronic databases.

Putting my own recommendations to library & info sci students and newly-minted librarians into practice, I've begun to volunteer at FIN. I'll be devoting 4 hours a week on Fridays to keep my skills sharp and learn some new.

I also had the pleasure of meeting Herb V. Peterson (HVP) and his Color & Com class. Amanda gave a great breakdown to the class of how she and FIN can meet the specific needs of design students. After Amanda gave a short introduction to the organization of FIN and how design thinking influenced decisions of the Eisenman/Trott-designed space, HVP got down to business discussing the various techniques Albers used to create contrast and tonal values.

I had not seen the Interaction of Color portfolio that HVP spoke to. Only 200 were produced, and OSU's is in remarkably good condition. The plates themselves are serigraphs (aka silk-screens) which were produced by Albers and some of his grad students, and they are much more vibrant than in this book--as to be expected. There is also a bit of theatre or spectacle to the plates due to the unveiling of some of the contrasts. In all, Interaction of Color is a masterful teaching tool and great opportunity for students to learn.

It was a great day at OSU's Fine Arts Library, and I look forward to returning next Friday.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Finding Library Jobs

Image: Bryan Loar's Current Jobs Folder

It's amazing how many different resources are out there and how they could easily be missed.  Not knowing where to look, as Mary Pergander points out, is certainly a danger.

Some services like ALA JobLIST and (and Chronicle of Higher Ed. to some extent) allow users to create RSS feeds specific to their preferences.  However, there are many lesser known state-based resources that could be easily overlooked.  One helpful source to use in order to uncover these resources is Library Job Postings on the Internet.